The Big 12 and the Southeastern conferences have announced a deal that will pit their football regular-season champions against each other in a bowl game beginning in 2014.
The five-year agreement between two of the most successful BCS conferences was announced Friday.
“Our goal is to provide the fans across the country with a New Year’s Day prime-time tradition,” commented acting Big 12 Conference Commissioner Chuck Neinas. “This is a landmark agreement between two of the most successful football conferences during the BCS era to stage a post-season event. The creation of this game featuring the champions of the Big 12 and SEC will have tremendous resonance in college football.”
If one or both of the league champions are selected to play in what is expected to be a four-team national championship playoff, another team would be selected for the Big 12-SEC matchup.
SEC Commissioner Mike Slive and incoming Big 12 Commissioner Bob Bowlsby say a new January bowl tradition has been born.
“I am very excited by the prospects for a game between our champion and the champion of the Southeastern Conference,” said Bowlsby.
The announcement raises the possibility of Missouri and Texas A&M playing their former conference-rivals. Both schools are joining the SEC this summer as TCU and West Virginia join the Big 12.
"This agreement reinforces that the Big 12 is exactly what we've been saying for some time -- a strong, stable, vibrant conference that is at the forefront of intercollegiate athletics," said Dr. Sheahon Zenger, the Kansas athletic director.
Jayhawks football coach Charlie Weis agreed. "What a great day for the Big 12," he said, "To be matched with the champion of the SEC places the two most successful conferences in the BCS era head-to-head. All Big 12 fans should be happy today."
Kansas State was also excited about the prospect of Bill Snyder's Wildcats taking on the other top conference in the country.
"Today's announcement is yet another validation of the Big 12's accelerating forward trajectory as a leadership conference in college athletics. I am grateful for the leadership of Chuck Neinas and incoming Commissioner Bob Bowlsby, and President Schulz and the Big 12 Board of Directors for their commitment to the bright future of our league," said Director of Athletics John Currie.
Specific details, including host sites, will be announced at a later date.